Tripoli Tumbles on City 'Liveability Ranking Report'

Jeff Neumann · 08/31/11 04:30AM

The Economist Intelligence Unit annually releases a "Liveability Ranking Report" that "assesses which locations around the world provide the best or the worst living conditions." HR Departments routinely use it as a benchmark for whether or not a company's employees should get hardship pay. If you were, say, an oil man sent to grab Libya's natural resources at the behest of a major company (or after the "Lockerbie Bomber" was swapped for lucrative oil contracts), well, you'd be in the money! But it also wouldn't be much fun.

Wearing Designer Labels Will Make You Rich and Powerful

Adrian Chen · 04/02/11 04:56PM

Everyone knows people who buy designer clothes are shallow assholes. But it looks like everyone is a shallow asshole. People apparently hold other people in higher regard simply if they're wearing clothes with a designer label.

Is There Money In International News? (No.)

Moe · 09/09/08 01:58PM

Ruh-roh, Kim Jong-Il is sick, what happens when he dies? Hell if we know!! And will we truly know tomorrow or whenever this guy gets back to the executive assistant charged with Explainer-ing it for Slate? Not really! As literary Tumblrer Keith Gessen pointed out while trying to make sense of the whole Ossetia mess, you know there's a redundant "inadequacy" to the international news in our dying newspapers when even bloggers with the attention spans of Piper Palin feel it. But isn't that because our dying newspapers have mostly killed their foreign bureaus because there's no money in it?Yes! Which is why, as readers, we are happy these guys from Boston have founded the Politico of international news. (It is already poaching people from Politico.) And those newsroom cutbacks may enable Global News Enterprises LLC.* to put together a pretty strong team. From an announcement in March:

Who Is The Solzhenitsyn Of China, Anyway?

Moe · 08/18/08 06:21PM

When The Economist marked the opening of the Beijing Olympics by putting Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn on the cover, we took it as a big hint to waste no time naming the Solzhenitsyn of China already. Of course, it was not a hint directed at us, but at Slate, which usually scoops everyone on the whole "pithy takes on weighty geopolitical topics" angle. The thing is, no one has found one yet! Perhaps because the Chinese are a godless people and therefore less likely to accord epic religious and literary symbolism to perpendicular lines drawn in their dirt? Because it's not for total for lack of trying. The New Republic blog has been featuring a Chinese "Dissident of the Day" during most days of the games, but they all seem to have been imprisoned — thanks, Yahoo! — before their publishing careers could really take off. Slate, for its part, had Anne Applebaum write a piece on a non-incarcerated candidate for the title, a Communist Party official named Yang Jisheng who wrote a book called Tombstone about the 36 million Chinese who starved to death during the Great Leap Forward. But Tombstone, like pretty much any account of post-1949 Chinese history that is in any way true, is banned in China.No one has bothered translating it into English. And even if it could get published both places, it would probably seem a little dated. (One of the reasons Solzhenityn's seminal One Day In The Life Of Ivan Denisovich became such a hit in the U.S. is that it was published in Russia first, back in 1962, back when people were still starving to death from the Great Leap Forward.) Of course, it would be nice to think that Solzhenitsyn was so influential, and his depictions of the dehumanization of Soviet labor camps so universally applicable, that Solzhenitsyn himself would be the "Solzhenitsyn of China." But when he died it turned out the official state-controlled Chinese literary association had no comment, explaining that they didn't have any Russian literary experts on hand. Then someone unearthed a Chinese Russian literature expert named Liu Wenfei who has basically never spoken to the Western press. "For Chinese intellectuals," he said, Solzhenitsyn was "a master of literature." And "for others who suffered in the 1960s and 1970s, he was a thinker with a deep sense of justice and morality who pitilessly attacked the crimes of the Soviet dictatorship." Which is a pretty clever way of admitting that pretty much all Chinese intellectuals "suffered in the 1960s and 1970s" without having to point out that so many continue to suffer. Ma Jian, whose novelized account of the pro-democracy movement that ended in the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre came out this year, is also, needless to say, banned. (Most Chinese still don't know about the massacre itself.) Same goes, of course, for the Chinese guy to possess both the distinctions of "years in labor camps" and "Nobel Prize in Literature," Gao Xingjian. Even if it weren't, Gao is probably too highbrow to achieve the influence and audience of a Solzhenitsyn. Or maybe it is not a question of "brow," but a question of "literature" entirely once any society has reached a level of technological advancement beyond that of Pyongyang — which is to say: Not that Solzhenitsyn really thought of himself as all that influential in the end. Obit: Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn [Economist]

New York is Number One!

ian spiegelman · 08/17/08 10:19AM

Suck it, London! Better luck next time, Tokyo! Paris, you're over! New York City is the most competitive city in the whole wide world, says this handy chart from The Economist. "The study ranks 500 cities on their ability to attract and use resources to generate wealth. The cities are assessed on nine measures, including income, economic growth, innovation, jobs, prices and the presence of multinational firms." Just one problem...

How Bloggers Defy Despots

Michael Weiss · 06/30/08 11:47AM

One unmitigated good that's come of the lawlessness of the Internet is that it's allowed daring bloggers in third world countries to flout their authoritarian regimes (Kos and HuffPo just like to think they do the same). Egypt, China, Iran, and Pakistan have all jailed online diarists and tried to block the rest of the population from even accessing international media. All have failed for the same reason samizdat entered the lexicon in the cold war: dissidents are more enterprising than their persecutors. (At left, activists demanding the release of Egyptian blogger Kareem Amer, who was sentenced to four years in prison and then became a cause celebre).

Size Matters, Time and Newsweek

Ryan Tate · 04/04/08 06:40AM

"Both men share what could be called 'Economist-envy.' In 2007, the Economist newsmagazine, published by U.K.-based The Economist Newspaper Ltd., saw an 8.5% increase in advertising pages compared with 2006, according to the Magazine Publishers of America. By contrast, Newsweek's advertising pages dropped 6.7% and Time's fell 6.9%." [WSJ]

Remainders: Martha Makes a Deal

Jessica · 08/07/06 06:13PM

• Martha Stewart has settled her civil suit with the SEC for insider trading, forced to pony up only $195K (insignificant pennies to her). Much more bruising is the other part of the agreement, which bars her from serving as CEO or senior official at any publicly-held company for the next 5 years. Including her own Martha Stewart Omnimedia. Nothing in the settlement forbidding a puppet regime... [NYT]
• After all that silly Cocaine Kate crap, model Kate Moss is bigger than ever. See, children? Drugs are good. [Made in Brazil]
The Economist lurves Fall Out Boy. [FoM]
• Menace II...the Poconos? [AP]
• Calling all Lee Majors fans: unite in the quest to see The Fall Guy on DVD. [Jalopnik]
• We fail to see how a printable map of the celebrity whereabouts is any less life-threatening than our silly map. [NYM]
• Greg Gutfeld on fear. Lots and lots of fear. [HuffPo]
• Blue States Lose, but the European Union loses with a certain je ne sais quoi. [Logged Hours]
• Conde Nast to launch a website called Flip, aimed at "fuelling teenagers' ambition," so that said youth may someday go on to become ruthless, backstabbing Conde assistants. [AdAge]
• Paris Hilton claims that she is going celibate. If a celebutwat shuts her legs when no one's around, does she make a sound? [AP]

'Economist' Editor Bill Emmott Steps Down

Jessica · 02/21/06 02:30PM

After 13 years at the helm of the irresistably British Economist, editor Bill Emmott is throwing in his conservative towel. His career at the publication started 26 years ago in Brussels; during his editorship, the magazine's circulation has more than doubled, surpassing the million-reader mark. Emmott's now decided to quit while he's ahead, noting the magazine is "in top form and in great hands, which makes a good moment to go." Quite the sentimental one, isn't he?

The Vertu/Xelibri market

Gawker · 02/24/03 04:29PM

The Economist asks, "Is there really a market for a $20,000 mobile phone?" Vertu, the "world's most expensive cell phone" (reportedly a favorite of Madonna and Gwyneth Paltrow), has platinum, ruby and sapphire components and literally turns technology into fashion. (No, it can't do anything particularly spectacularunless you count speed-dialing the exclusive concierge service that comes with the calling plan. It's cost-prohibitive for the little people and that's all that matters.) Siemens is introducing a similar line. The Xelibris (right) "are fashion accessories that make phone calls," and will be sold in department stores and fashion retailers.
The world's most expensive cell phone [Gizmodo]
The origins of Vertu [Economist via BoingBoing]
Siemens unveils Xelibri fashion phones [Infosync via BoingBoing]

To go to the gym or not to go to the gym

Gawker · 12/24/02 12:26PM

The Daily News counsels against letting things get in the way of your daily workout. The Economist, however, suggests that working out at the gym can be an utterly pointless exercise that does more harm than good, sometimes even resulting in muscle dysmorpha ("bigorexia") or permanent injuries from having been yoga-ed into damaging positions. At the end of the day, we have to ask ourselves who's smarterThe NY Daily News or The Economist. We will concede, however, that if you must work out obsessively, New York has some of the most interesting forms of exertainment availablefrom Sunday morning gospel choir exercises to striptease aerobics to firefighter workouts.
First, admit defeat. [NY Daily News]
The cult of the gym [The Economist]
Firefighter training at Crunch gym []
Cardio strip []
Praise & workout [PRWeb]

Mini-size me

Gawker · 05/02/02 10:44AM

The Economist has its Big Mac index of purchasing power; I, food snob that I am, have a sushi index....